AfterDawn: Tech news

President backs 'STEM Video Game Challenge'

Written by Andre Yoskowitz (Google+) @ 16 Sep 2010 23:21 User comments (26)

President backs 'STEM Video Game Challenge' U.S. President Barack Obama has endorsed the National STEM Video Game Challenge, a campaign to "promote and support student learning" in the areas of science, tech, engineering and math (STEM) by developing video games.
Says the President: "Our success as a nation depends on strengthening America's role as the world's engine of discovery and innovation. I applaud partners in the National STEM Video Game Challenge for lending their resources, expertise, and their enthusiasm to the task of strengthening America's leadership in the 21st century by improving education in science, technology, engineering and math."

There are two categories for game developers, the "Developer Prize" for developers creating games aimed at children aged 4-9, and the "Youth Prize" for actual kid developers aged 10-13.

The top reward in the "Developer Prize" is $50,000. Other prizes inlcude "a Collegiate Prize of $25K for the best undergraduate or graduate student submission" and a "prize of $25K for the best submission that has the greatest potential to reach undeserved populations."

Adds Michael Gallagher of the ESA: "Video games are improving and advancing the way Americans are living, working and playing. The acknowledgement and appreciation of President Obama, our partners in this campaign and leading child advocates, is a strong endorsement of the amazing potential and benefit that games can have on children."

The STEM challenge will accept all entries from October 12th until January 5th.

If you are interested in entering, check the official site here: National STEM Video Game Challenge

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26 user comments

116.9.2010 23:25

Why can't we have real learning games? There are already a truckload of educational kiddie games...I'll be impressed when someone makes a game that plays like Bioshock, yet teaches trigonometry...maybe they could even add schools to WoW...if they did that, then the 8-20 wasted hours a day of every WoW user could go towards an education.

216.9.2010 23:38

Finally something Obama did right.


Carpe Noctem

316.9.2010 23:59

Originally posted by flyingpen:
Finally something Obama did right.
1 in 1000 is still really really bad.

417.9.2010 1:00

better then bush...

Obama can only work with the economy that he inherited from bush.
See what I did there? Just like all the crying that happened when we were going to war. They all cried that bush had to use Clintons army. Now Obama has to use Bush's economy. Lucky for Bush, he also got to use Clintons economy.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 17 Sep 2010 @ 1:07

517.9.2010 4:41

Yup...they are all the same scum. Don't believe that they are enemies; they all work towards the same goal; only their paths are different.

...But this article isn't about the rape of our economy for the last 10 years...it is about a $50,000 prize for writing a video game that kids won't want to play, a $25,000 prize for a game written by a child (not even kids will want to play that) and a $25,000 prize for making a video game for people who can't afford to buy it. It is all about serving those who do not want to be served, and serving those who do want to be served with something that they don't want.

BTW...Mr Obama has done many thing correctly during his reign...every morning he ties his shoes, puts on a suit, brushes his teeth, and does any number of other things very well. It is just that whole "running a country" bit that he has trouble with.

617.9.2010 9:02

Originally posted by KillerBug:
Yup...they are all the same scum. Don't believe that they are enemies; they all work towards the same goal; only their paths are different.

...But this article isn't about the rape of our economy for the last 10 years...it is about a $50,000 prize for writing a video game that kids won't want to play, a $25,000 prize for a game written by a child (not even kids will want to play that) and a $25,000 prize for making a video game for people who can't afford to buy it. It is all about serving those who do not want to be served, and serving those who do want to be served with something that they don't want.

BTW...Mr Obama has done many thing correctly during his reign...every morning he ties his shoes, puts on a suit, brushes his teeth, and does any number of other things very well. It is just that whole "running a country" bit that he has trouble with.
Absolutely.

717.9.2010 9:09

for someone that didn't read the Global Financial Defecate and how to get out hand book, he sure thinks he know's what he's doing all the while schools are laying of teachers, cutting budgets for needed equipment and teacher pay & benefits. Yes let our government teach you children for they are all knowing.


Obama has accomplished nothing, sadly he never will once his term is up he's gone i can guarantee that.



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817.9.2010 9:43

BTW...Mr Obama has done many thing correctly during his reign...every morning he ties his shoes, puts on a suit, brushes his teeth, and does any number of other things very well. It is just that whole "running a country" bit that he has trouble with.



Please run for office. Any office. I understand the right to free speech and all, but everyone likes to slam so hard and stupidly. I'd love to see everyone that thinks/feels/knows/says they can do better, run for office. The average person, which you and I are, doesn't and wouldn't know how to handle the majority of problems ANY president has had to deal with. You think you can, but you can't. Get some perspective, get some experience, get some people interested in you, then run for office.

Good luck.

917.9.2010 10:28

Originally posted by KillerBug:

BTW...Mr Obama has done many thing correctly during his reign...every morning he ties his shoes, puts on a suit, brushes his teeth, and does any number of other things very well. It is just that whole "running a country" bit that he has trouble with.
Yes but can many others do much better, could you? I couldn't. It's not easy running a country, because yea its the top seat but you still have rules to follow and people that still need to agree with you to get shit done. You can't please everyone, and that's the toughest thing about being President. Now I not saying he good or bad, nor will I comment on Bush. Obviously there are some Presidents better than others, but in the end every single one of em did something to piss off the majority of the nation at one point. I guess my point is, in Obama's shoes, he's doing the best he can with what he was given.

1017.9.2010 10:58

Originally posted by Mysttic:
Yes but can many others do much better, could you? I couldn't. It's not easy running a country, because yea its the top seat but you still have rules to follow and people that still need to agree with you to get shit done. You can't please everyone, and that's the toughest thing about being President. Now I not saying he good or bad, nor will I comment on Bush. Obviously there are some Presidents better than others, but in the end every single one of em did something to piss off the majority of the nation at one point. I guess my point is, in Obama's shoes, he's doing the best he can with what he was given.
Agree with everything here, Obama was given a country on the verge of collapse. We'd be complaining (today, 2 years later) no matter if McCain was president, if Arnold Schwarzenegger was president or if a talking dog was president.

Many thought "change" and "hope" meant the U.S. could be fixed overnight not fully understanding the magnitude of the situation. For starters, the housing bubble started back in the Carter administration...

1117.9.2010 11:19

I agree with the majority of the comments here. Every President inherits the mistakes of his predecessors. Obama's Presidency was doomed to one term from the start. The people that voted for him didn't understand that "change" doesn't happen overnight. When the housing situation, unemployment and the ongoing wars weren't resolved quickly they turned on him. I don't agree with a lot of his policies, but I understand the situation he is in. Unfortunately, everybody who voted him into office doesn't see this.

1217.9.2010 18:31
llongtheD
Inactive

Originally posted by baxter00:


BTW...Mr Obama has done many thing correctly during his reign...every morning he ties his shoes, puts on a suit, brushes his teeth, and does any number of other things very well. It is just that whole "running a country" bit that he has trouble with.

Please run for office. Any office. I understand the right to free speech and all, but everyone likes to slam so hard and stupidly. I'd love to see everyone that thinks/feels/knows/says they can do better, run for office. The average person, which you and I are, doesn't and wouldn't know how to handle the majority of problems ANY president has had to deal with. You think you can, but you can't. Get some perspective, get some experience, get some people interested in you, then run for office.

Good luck.
@baxter00
You actually sound like you still have faith in this corrupt political system. Obama, Bush, Clinton, etc. are nothing more than figure heads for large special interest groups and corporations. The problem is how many people wouldn't be corrupt by the money and power that comes with a top political position?
Back to the point of the article... I'm all for anything that aides in learning, but whats wrong with "cracking the books?" I guess with the culture we live in, we need to be constantly entertained.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 17 Sep 2010 @ 18:37

1317.9.2010 18:38

Originally posted by llongtheD:
Originally posted by baxter00:


BTW...Mr Obama has done many thing correctly during his reign...every morning he ties his shoes, puts on a suit, brushes his teeth, and does any number of other things very well. It is just that whole "running a country" bit that he has trouble with.

Please run for office. Any office. I understand the right to free speech and all, but everyone likes to slam so hard and stupidly. I'd love to see everyone that thinks/feels/knows/says they can do better, run for office. The average person, which you and I are, doesn't and wouldn't know how to handle the majority of problems ANY president has had to deal with. You think you can, but you can't. Get some perspective, get some experience, get some people interested in you, then run for office.

Good luck.
@baxter00
You actually sound like you still have faith in this corrupt political system. Obama, Bush, Clinton, etc. are nothing more than figure heads for large special interest groups and corporations. The problem is how many people wouldn't be corrupt by the money and power that comes with a top political position?
Back to the point of the article... I'm all for anything that aides in learning, but whats wrong with "cracking the books?" I guess in the culture we live in, we need to be constantly entertained though.
they can't afford books. cheap labor, in the form of a competition now that works.

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1417.9.2010 18:41

Quote:
Back to the point of the article... I'm all for anything that aides in learning, but whats wrong with "cracking the books?" I guess with the culture we live in, we need to be constantly entertained.
There isn't anything wrong with cracking open a book; I don't think Obama or this article is saying lets replace our education system with video game learning. It's simply adding a medium or rather another tool to learn from. When done right video games can actually teach you a lot. Hell I really got into reading books after I started playing RPGs on Nintendo back in the 80s. So I can throw the question back at you, what's wrong with using video games as an added learning tool?

Now keep this in mind, I said added and not primary. Video games should never ever take the lead as a learning resource for kids or adults, that would be plain stupid.

1517.9.2010 18:55
llongtheD
Inactive

Originally posted by Mysttic:
Quote:
Back to the point of the article... I'm all for anything that aides in learning, but whats wrong with "cracking the books?" I guess with the culture we live in, we need to be constantly entertained.
There isn't anything wrong with cracking open a book; I don't think Obama or this article is saying lets replace our education system with video game learning. It's simply adding a medium or rather another tool to learn from. When done right video games can actually teach you a lot. Hell I really got into reading books after I started playing RPGs on Nintendo back in the 80s. So I can throw the question back at you, what's wrong with using video games as an added learning tool?

Now keep this in mind, I said added and not primary. Video games should never ever take the lead as a learning resource for kids or adults, that would be plain stupid.
I agree with what your saying, and wasn't trying to imply that Obama was saying replace our system with video game learning. Hopefully in the years/decades to come it doesn't become the primary tool. I just think there is more room for free thought, when not guided by software.

If your fish seems sick, put it back in the water.

1617.9.2010 23:58

Originally posted by Mysttic:
Yes but can many others do much better, could you? I couldn't. It's not easy running a country, because yea its the top seat but you still have rules to follow and people that still need to agree with you to get shit done. You can't please everyone, and that's the toughest thing about being President. Now I not saying he good or bad, nor will I comment on Bush. Obviously there are some Presidents better than others, but in the end every single one of em did something to piss off the majority of the nation at one point. I guess my point is, in Obama's shoes, he's doing the best he can with what he was given.
I agree with everything here as well. The thing I hate most about critics is that 99.9999% of them just complain until they are blue-in-the-face. They've never been in the position before, they almost never offer suggestions to fix the problem and when the problem is fixed they aren't grateful instead they just start on the next "issue".

Granted, whoever is the President of the United States (or any country, for that matter) will always have their critics. Some weather the storm better than others and some do their job better than others. I won't comment on the current (or former) administration because it doesn't do me, or them, any good.

If a bubble bursts or the economy collapses the one who gets blamed for the problem is whoever is in office regardless of who really started, and probably should be blamed for, the problem.

The one who usually gets credited for solving an issue is whoever is in office when the problem is resolved, even if they did nothing to solve the problem themselves.

As for the article, at least he is trying something a bit new and different.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 17 Sep 2010 @ 23:59

"The only people who should buy Monster cable are people who light cigars with Benjamins." - Gizmodo

1717.9.2010 23:58

Originally posted by Mysttic:
Yes but can many others do much better, could you? I couldn't. It's not easy running a country, because yea its the top seat but you still have rules to follow and people that still need to agree with you to get shit done. You can't please everyone, and that's the toughest thing about being President. Now I not saying he good or bad, nor will I comment on Bush. Obviously there are some Presidents better than others, but in the end every single one of em did something to piss off the majority of the nation at one point. I guess my point is, in Obama's shoes, he's doing the best he can with what he was given.
I agree with everything here as well. The thing I hate most about critics is that 99.9999% of them just complain until they are blue-in-the-face. They've never been in the position before, they almost never offer suggestions to fix the problem and when the problem is fixed they aren't grateful instead they just start on the next "issue".

Granted, whoever is the President of the United States (or any country, for that matter) will always have their critics. Some weather the storm better than others and some do their job better than others. I won't comment on the current (or former) administration because it doesn't do me, or them, any good.

If a bubble bursts or the economy collapses the one who gets blamed for the problem is whoever is in office, regardless of who really started, and probably should be blamed for, the problem.

The one who usually gets credited for solving an issue is whoever is in office when the problem is resolved, even if they did nothing to solve the problem themselves.

As for the article, at least he is trying something a bit new and different.

"The only people who should buy Monster cable are people who light cigars with Benjamins." - Gizmodo

1818.9.2010 0:35

They are catering to kids 4-9...most of them can hardly read at all (US education is not great), and spend most of their mental power just reading the words...not actually learning the message they are reading.


BTW...I don't run for office because I am not a great liar, I wouldn't work for terrorists, and I can think clearly...meaning that I would never be accepted into either side of the bipartisan party that has run this country since 1869.

1918.9.2010 1:54
llongtheD
Inactive

@killerbug

So do you think we should be "catering" to them? Is navigating through a game with a limited number of scenarios and possible ways to solve a problem a good solution? Give several groups of young kids, or young adults a complex problem to solve, and you'll get many different solutions. Some may be right, some wrong, some overly complex, some overly simplified, but they get to be creative.
I'm not saying you can't learn from games, especially the basics of reading, writing and arithmetic. For those things I think they are very helpful. This article also talked about youth and collegiate prizes. For more complex problems with more complex solutions I don't think its as helpful, and may stifle creativity.
Maybe if we spent as much money on our educational system as we have bailing out multi-billion dollar corporations, and wars, we wouldn't be discussing spending a pittance on learning games.
To inject a little conspiracy theory, if these games ever become a primary tool for
learning, our youth will be taught by a select group of "programmers."
Is that the school you want your kid going to?

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 18 Sep 2010 @ 2:11

If your fish seems sick, put it back in the water.

2018.9.2010 4:02

"To inject a little conspiracy theory, if these games ever become a primary tool for
learning, our youth will be taught by a select group of "programmers."
Is that the school you want your kid going to? "

Honestly, the school systems of this country are a bigger deterrent to having children than anything else. I could withstand all the trials and troubles of being a parent, but not if the ultimate goal was to raise a brainwashed moron who considers the flag and the government to be more important than the country and the citizens within.

If you fear that video games might brainwash children by only leaving them a few paths, then you should sit through a few of the classes where children are allowed only one path; and it is a dead-end. It goes without saying that history, economics, and other such classes are nothing but false propaganda...but even classes like math and science are now designed to prevent actual thought...and the few children that still manage to think are forced to take drugs so dangerous that adults may not buy them without prescription. If we are concerned about a team of 20 programmers leading children down a limited number of possibly biased paths, what about the teams of 5-10 people that work together to write a history book where the emancipation proclamation was issued before the beginning of the civil war, where creationism has stolen the pages that would have gone to evolution and where the United States won the Vietnam War. If it was a choice between those values and Grand Theft Auto 4, I think I would give my child the later...if I was willing to bring another slave into this world, that is.

2118.9.2010 6:19
llongtheD
Inactive

"If you fear that video games might brainwash children by only leaving them a few paths, then you should sit through a few of the classes where children are allowed only one path; and it is a dead-end."

I don't have to fear it, it is already reality. Republicans or Democrats. One or the other.
Why no third option? Or fourth?
We're already being programmed by our devices. Our phones, our computers, our televisions.
When I was a little kid you could buy candy cigarettes from the five and dime. They came in the same little packs that the real ones did, but they were mint candy. Its all just "conditioning."
What bothers me is they didn't have the tools they do now.
Now kids will really have to get with the program, so to speak.


If your fish seems sick, put it back in the water.

2219.9.2010 0:43

Originally posted by KillerBug:
Why can't we have real learning games? There are already a truckload of educational kiddie games...I'll be impressed when someone makes a game that plays like Bioshock, yet teaches trigonometry...maybe they could even add schools to WoW...if they did that, then the 8-20 wasted hours a day of every WoW user could go towards an education.
School in WoW. Thank you, that made my day. Would it be a snow day if the servers are down?

2319.9.2010 11:31

I smell a setup.. *sniff* *sniff*. Noway, anybody could resist a shot a Obama, lol. To the point, Obama knows nothing about gaming(just to add to a list of things Obama knows nothing about). The games that would be created would totally suck and nobody would like. And how much "resource" is this STEM program lending? Are they gonna totally teach someone to make a video game? Man, I would love free training on complex video game making. But i doubt they would have the resource to TEACH someone how to do it. More than likely they will give a quick instruction guide with some generic game making software. Looks good on paper but will be a bunch of crock when implemented.



2420.9.2010 1:52

What the heck. I bought my ex's daughter this little gameing system that looked like the old Nintendo 64 console. Cartiges looked about the same. Bought about 15 20 games, Dora, Blues Clues, Disney a whole bunch of various things. And they where all educational. Now granted this would fall under the 4-7 age range, but still, this stuff is already out there. The only reason this is making news is because Obama needs some positive press. (Which every president uses) (Although I can't stand Obama and his pass the buck blame while Bush sat there and took all the hate that got tossed at him)Back to the point sorry..... This stuff is out there, nobody pays attention to it though because it's not Nintendo, Playstation, or Microsoft, oh, and its not backed by the president.

2520.9.2010 2:18

Leap Frog?

2620.9.2010 21:43

Quote:

The top reward in the "Developer Prize" is $50,000. Other prizes inlcude "a Collegiate Prize of $25K for the best undergraduate or graduate student submission" and a "prize of $25K for the best submission that has the greatest potential to reach underserved populations."

So, we're talking about $100k? (overlooking the TWO misspelled words in the quote ;) )
$100K or the price of ONE overpriced, under qualified California Union Teacher?

This isn't a program. It's a joke.
Where's the Million dollar prize?
Why would any self-respecting kid programmer have anything at all to do with this program? There is FAR MORE money to be made... in the commercial educational software world.

As for the politics in this thread?
Obama sucks. Plain and simple. Bush sucked too. So did Clinton.
When you are President the countries problems are yours. You own them. That's why you were elected. Every time Obama blames Bush he loses another 100k votes.
As for the whole... "Do you think you could do better... bullcrap." ... No, I don't think I could do better... But then, I'm not telling the world that I CAN.
He ran for president and said he could get this country back on track. Problem is that his track is running off of the cliff.

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